The Internet of Us: Knowing More and Understanding Less in the Age of Big Data. In press. March 2016. (New York: Liverite/W. W. Norton). Audio book, Random House. Kirkus starred review 2015.
With far-reaching implications, this urgent treatise promises to revolutionize our understanding of what it means to be human in the digital age.
The paradox confronting us today is that even as we know more and process information at a faster rate, we reason, think, and understand less. While a wealth of literature has been devoted to similar topics, the deep philosophical implications of this seismic shift have not been properly explored until now. Demonstrating that knowledge based on reason plays an essential role in society and that there is more to knowing than just acquiring information, leading philosopher Michael P. Lynch shows how the modern Internet has distorted not only the way we learn and communicate but also the very essence of what it means to be human. Charting a path from Plato’s cave to Shannon’s mathematical theory of information to Google Glass, Lynch builds on previous works by Nicholas Carr, James Gleick, and Jaron Lanier to give us a necessary guide for how to navigate the philosophical quagmire that is the Information Age.